The France star wore an Afro wig and blacked up his face, arms and legs for the picture, which was captioned ''80s party" and was accompanied by a basketball emoji and a laughing emoji on his official Twitter feed.
It also appeared on his Instagram account.
Responses quickly caused a storm with many people labeling the post "racist", urging Griezmann to delete the tweet and warning of a backlash.
He initially tried to temper the backlash by asking people to "calm down" and explaining it was merely a tribute to the Harlem Globetrotters.
"Calm down guys. I am a fan of the Harlem globetrotters and the good times. It is a tribute," the Tweet read.
Within an hour, Griezmann had deleted the image, posting a message in which he apologised if his tweets had offended anyone.
Several former footballers and personalities took to Twitter to express their shock with Tony Adams, former Granada coach and Arsenal legend, Stan Collymore, Piers Morgan, rapper Lecrae among them.